More than 700 lorries have been turned away and over 150 fines have been issued for non-compliance at the GB-EU border since the end of the Brexit transition period, it has been revealed.
The Government, which published the figures, said exporting businesses must get their documentation correct or risk delays.
The report comes after the UK officially left the European Union on 01 January 2021, meaning exporters must now treat goods shipped to the EU as they would the rest of the world.
This includes providing the right documentation to hauliers, including export declarations and the extra certificates needed for goods such as plant and animal products.
In a bid to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the EU, hauliers heading through Kent must also receive a negative Covid-19 test within 72 hours of crossing the border, as well as obtain a Kent Access Permit.
Failing to follow each of these rules could land exporting businesses with a fine of up to £300.
The report comes ahead of a predicted surge in HGV traffic at the border, underlining the urgency for exporters to get their documentation in order.
Commenting on the report, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Gove, said: “The preparations they have made have paid dividends and disruption has been minimal so far, but the real challenge and potential for significant disruption starts next week when we expect that the number of lorries heading to the border may return to normal levels.
“We have always been clear there would be changes now that we are out of the customs union and single market, so full compliance with the new rules is vital to avoid disruption, and the best way to ensure readiness is to follow the guidance on gov.uk and use the ‘Check an HGV’ service.”
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